Pat Conroy, one of the finest authors of our generation, has written an unforgettable narrative of endurance, agony, and achievement of manhood. Other reviewers have already stated the strengths of the work.
I will dissent from most of the others in one category: the narrator develops fabulous and fitting voices for each of the characters, but oh, how his frequent mispronunciations grated on me. Not to be able to pronounce words such as implacable, impudent, mahogany, stolid, indefatigable and others seems inexcusable in a narrator. Except for that one factor, this audiobook would have had a solid 5 stars.
An interesting story of the history of modern antibiotic development, one illustration shows how utterly the world was changed in a decade. In 1924, Calvin Coolidge, Jr. died when infection set into a blister on a toe from playing tennis without socks. FDR, Jr. did not die of a similar strep infection in 1936. Both were sons of presidents, still in the White House. Though treated with the very best of care available, Coolidge died in a mere 8 days at Walter Reed. The difference was sulfa. FDR, Jr. was among the earliest patients in the US to be treated with a modern antibiotic, and his rapid and full recovery from a strep infection ushered in the antibiotic age in this country. Europe had been enjoying the benefits of sulfanilamide for a few years, but the saving of a President's son brought the insistence for its use to the US.
Sulfa is the focus of this book, and soon after its obvious success, penicillin was discovered. The arrival of these two life-saving agents meant that unlike the First World War, injured soldiers were less likely to die of post-operative infections during the Second World War.
The pace of the book was tedious at points, and detail excessive at times. Nevertheless, I found this an interesting piece of medical history. Non-medical persons need not be concerned that it will be too technical. Recommended.
Redemption. Dog-love. Compassion. Frustration. Life.
Woven into this heart-warming story are all these components. As fascinating as the relationship between Daisy and the week-end puppy raiser (the author) is the relationship between the inmate-trainer and the author. How does a middle-class, law-abiding citizen relate to an inmate serving a long sentence for who-knows-what? Once the nature of the offense is discovered, how is the relationship changed? How does this happy and devoted puppy redeem them both? It would be hard to dislike this book.
The grace and grit that Susan Spencer-Wendel displays in coping with her ALS diagnosis is awe-inspiring. Few of us would have the financial or social resources that she had in living her final months so elegantly, yet it is the heart of this woman I respect, not her travels and purchases. Her husband's tender care-giving is almost beyond comprehension.
Readers are likely to have tears from time to time, but this is no cheap tear-jerker. It is beautiful and poignant. I recommend it highly.
When I read this installment of Maisie Dobbs' series, I felt it was the best yet. Maisie is a complex character, and far, far ahead of her time. How she is able to accomplish so much as a single woman in the 1930's is . . . well, fiction . . . but I love her nonetheless.
Author Jacqueline Winspear integrates the perfect amount of period detail, but in a way that does not feel overbearing. I always feel transported to another place and time. The highest complement I can give Winspear, however, is how she weaves the various subplots into each novel. I want to take a basket of food and offer to babysit for Billy and Dorene Bealle. I want to sip sherry with Maurice and absorb his wisdom. I want to be Maisie Dobbs!
I have found that I usually tire of a series after reading it from the first installment straight through to this point. Oddly, Craig Johnson just keeps getting better and better. New characters, new settings, and deep, rich characters keep the series fresh. I have devoured each installment and dreaded any wait for the next book to appear.
I've read them all through Audible, and I believe that George Guidall is as vital to Walt Longmire's success as the author is. After viewing the A&E series with great disappointment, I realize that George Guidall's voice has helped me conjure vivid mental pictures of these people (I can hardly call them characters any more!) and any TV portrayal simply cannot compete.
Please, Mr. Johnson, keep writing, and keep George Guidall as the audio voice for your work!
Afghanistan--the last place I would expect to provide the most enduring, complex plots and characters in recent fiction. Nevertheless, Hosseini draws the reader immediately into this land of contrasts and traditions, and it is easy to want the novel to go on for many hours more. When one puts down a Hosseini novel, its characters live on inside one's mind for many days. I can't help but wonder if the author is producing the subject matter for many literature students to come.
This is my first W.E.B. Griffin book, and likely my last. If you are a fan and convince me otherwise, I'm all ears. Perhaps he grew as an author.
One cannot fault the novel for being somewhat outdated; the pay phone that requires a dime certainly reflects its time of writing. I chuckled a bit at these glimpses back in time, but I read a lot of current fiction that reaches back into history.
What I disliked are the thin, predictable characters. I endured rather than enjoyed Men in Blue.
A fun entrance into a geographical area and career far different from my own, Clement creates a protagonist and cast of characters who are quirky, smart, and full of unforeseen layers. When one needs a digression from "real life" (at least for most of us), this could be it. I will add that the final solution is quite dark, and readers with delicate sensibilities may not enjoy what they find here. For myself, I've just downloaded the sequel!
The substance of the classic Jane Eyre is well established, and this character has enthralled readers for almost two hundred years. I can add little to the comments of readers who have read and studied the novel in far greater depth than I. I will add, however, that Susan Ericksen's narration was nothing short of splendid. In her most expressive rendition, I could hear Jane's youthful impertinence, her growing wisdom, and her passionate love. Desperation, strength of character, and fear issued with equal credibility from Susan Ericksen's voice.
After listening to the book, I was so impressed that I purchased the hard cover so that I could refer back to it repeatedly, and I have. I have used many of the exercises for enhancing willpower, and I can imagine that sitting through Dr. McGonigal's actual course at Stanford would be even more engaging. Well-researched and thoroughly documented.
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